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Nikon Monarch ATB 8x36 or ???

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/23/2009 at 21:45
murfman View Drop Down
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I've spent many hours over the past several days reading different posts in this forum and I think I've narrowed down my selection.    Please let me know if you think there is something better out there for me.

I will be using these primarily for bow hunting.  I wanted something small and light and wanted to get the best glass for under $300.  Ideally, I'd like a compact pair of binoculars like the Swarovski 8x20 pocket binocular, but at a price over $600, these were out of my league.
I couldn't find a pair of compact binoculars that fit my price budget.

I looked several compacts, but just couldn't get the quality that I'd like in the budget I had.  I looked at the Nikon prostaff ATB and although it was nice, it didn't have the same quality as the Monarch ATB.  The Bushnell custom elite e2 compact model was nice but isn't waterproof.

I liked the Leupold 8x32 Katmai, but it was over my budget (it's a firm $300 budget) and was heavier than the Nikon (even if the numbers on SWFA don't agree, it felt heavier).  The Nikon Monarch ATB 8x36 is currently my top choice.

Is there something else out there that I should consider or is the Nikon Monarch ATB 8x36 the best choice in this price range?

Thanks
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/23/2009 at 22:15
Klamath View Drop Down
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Since the $300 or less seems pretty firm, I'd suggest you wait a month or so and try the new 7x36 Vortex Diamondback.  It will also be in 9x36, but 7x is plenty for bow ranges.  About that same time Vortex will also release the compact porro prism Raptor in 6.5 and 8.5x32.  That expands the selection a little.  Dealers should have them in the first week in April.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/24/2009 at 09:58
lucznik View Drop Down
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For an under-$300 budget, you would be better off getting a small Porro-prism glass like the Leupold Yosemite and pocketing the $200 in savings.  This little Porro glass is significantly better than any sub-$300 roof prism glass because of at least three reasons:

  1. Brighter - Because its Total Internal Reflection does not require the mirrored surfaces required in the roof prism glass.  Also, at the sub-$300 price level, those mirrored surfaces will likely be made of aluminum - which tends to lose a lot of light.  At the very best you might find a model with silver coatings, but even these are light-losers.  You simply won't find any offering dialectric mirror coatings at this price level.
  2. Better Image Quality - Because its design does not create the phase shift that must be corrected in roof prism glass.  Even the very best phase coatings do not completely correct for this problem.  They come close, but they will never be perfect. And at under $300, you aren't getting very the best phase coatings.
  3. Size - You will likely be surprised to discover that the Yosemite is not nearly as large or bulky as you may have once thought.

 



Edited by lucznik - February/24/2009 at 10:00
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/24/2009 at 11:30
murfman View Drop Down
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The biggest issues I've had with the porro prism binoculars is the size.  I've mostly been able to look at 8x42 sized porros (Nikon Action Extreme, Pentax PCF WP II, Leupold Mesa) - all of which were larger and heavier than I would like.

I have not yet looked at the Yosemite.  They are listed at 4.5" long while the Nikon Monarch ATB 8x36 is 4.9, so maybe they aren't as bukly as I might have thought.    

I certainly wouldn' t mind saving the extra $200.  Thanks for the suggestion.

Are there similar sized porro's that are a significant step up from the Yosemite in quality but are still in the $300 or less price range?   Is it worth going to a higher quality porro for $300 or less?

Thanks agian.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/24/2009 at 12:00
Klamath View Drop Down
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Luczink has a good suggestion.  I feel a bit foolish for not mentioning it.  I have both the Yosemite 6x and 8x.  The 8x is wider and lighter than the Nikon Monarch 8x42 I have.  The Yosemite also had a better image than the Monarch, wider fov too.  It looks like the new Vortex Raptor is looking to give the Yosemite some competition.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/24/2009 at 12:52
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I have the yosemite 6x30 and I just bought a Promaster Infinity Elite
ELX 8x42 ED
  and while I love them, the Yosemite appear brighter to me. at least thats what my eyes see.

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/24/2009 at 14:27
lucznik View Drop Down
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Originally posted by murfman murfman wrote:

Are there similar sized porro's that are a significant step up from the Yosemite in quality but are still in the $300 or less price range?  
  No.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/24/2009 at 14:49
murfman View Drop Down
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Thanks for all the information.  It's hard for me to directly compare it to the Nikon Monarch ATB 8x36 because no-one locally carries both, but I did find one and, from what I could tell, it looks like it might be the best solution.  
It was definitely smaller than I expected.  That was certainly a surprise.

I'll probably have one on order by the end of the day.  I could wait for the Vortex Raptor, but think I'll go with the Yosemite for now.

Thanks.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: February/25/2009 at 06:47
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murfman, I own a pair of Swarovski SLC in 7x42 which I absolutely love and wouldn't think about selling them or replacing them.  However my wife wanted a pair of binoculars and being that she wanted something small and didn't want to spend the $$ for a pair like mine I bought her the Leupold Yosemite which she loves becuase of their size and weight plus they are very clear and bright.  I liked them so much that I bought myself a pair for local hunts and for something to keep in my truck.  You'll really like them once you get them in your hand.  Good luck.
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